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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

avocado orange stacked salad

  This is a most refreshing and wonderful winter salad--found it here:  Orange and Avocado Salad

Serves 2 
1 orange, peeled and sliced crosswise 
1-2 avocados, peeled, pitted, and sliced crosswise 
1/2 cup microgreens (available at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods)
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice 
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 
pinch of coarse sea salt

Sprinkle avocado slices with sea salt. Arrange avocado and orange slices in 2 stacks.  In a small bowl, whisk together orange juice and olive oil. Top with a microgreens and drizzle with olive oil mixture.

Sweet Potato quinoa black bean burgers

These are different because they use sweet potatoes and quinoa. I do like them--great with ketchup and so forth. I am copying this--go to her blog for more details on how to prepare everything--she explains it in detail!!!

This is copied and pasted from this blog: 
Sweet Tater Black Bean Burgers [yields 8 burgers – vegan, gf]
  • 15oz black beans, drained + rinsed
  • 3c cubed sweet tater, cooked + skin on [~1.5lbs]
  • 1/2c frozen or fresh corn
  • 2/3c finely chopped onion [1/2 medium onion]
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/2c cooked quinoa
  • 6T rolled oats, partially ground
  • 2T sunflower seeds
  • 1/2t salt
  • black pepper
  • 1t cumin
  • 1t oregano
  • 1/4t coriander
  • 1t chili powder
  • 1/4t cayenne [optional]
  • 1T olive oil
  1. Preheat your oven to 375* once you finish cooking the quinoa + potato.
  2. Mash half of the beans in a bowl until paste-like.
  3. Add in the rest of the beans and give a very light stir/mash to combine.
  4. In a large bowl, mash the sweet tater.  Each cube should be mashed, but you don’t want it creamy.
  5. Stir in the salt, pepper, oregano, coriander, chili powder, cayenne [if using] and olive oil, until combined.
  6. Mix in the onion, garlic, corn, black beans, quinoa, sunflower seeds, and ground oats, until just combined.
  7. Taste, and adjust seasonings to your liking.
  8. Form into balls, between your hands and flatten into 1/2”-3/4” thick patties.  This should make 8 medium/large patties.
  9. Place on a pan lined with parchment paper [or lightly greased pan] and bake on each side for 15min, flipping once, half-way through.
  10. Remove from oven + serve! 
*If you want to refrigerate or freeze them, let fully cool on a cooling rack.  Place in a sealed container for the fridge, or wrap in saran, then foil, then in a bag for the freezer.  If reheating a frozen burger, let it thaw completely.  Re-heat in a greased pan, over medium heat for ~3-5min per side, until hot throughout.
*To make the ground oats – Pulse your blender on + off, until you have the consistency about half way to flour.
*Instead of ground oats, feel free to sub – millet flour, oat flour, quinoa flour, whole wheat flour, etc.
*To pan cook – Heat a pan to medium and lightly grease.  Cook on each side for 5-8min, flip + cook another 5-8min until golden brown.
*For the grill – Bake burgers for 15min on one side, flip burgers once and bake another 10min.  While baking, preheat your grill slightly above medium [~350-375*]  Grease the grates and cook burgers for ~3min per side.

Monday, February 20, 2012

black bean brown rice red pepper dish (like stuffed red pepper)--good dish for Lent

This tastes very similar to stuffed peppers. I really enjoyed this. I used some really good rice grown here in SC.

1 cup uncooked brown rice
1 can black beans, drained
1 can of dice tomatoes
5 cloves of chopped garlic
1 onion, chopped
1 large red bell pepper , chopped
salt and pepper
optional : lime juice, taco sauce or salsa 
optional: a can of corn

Cook the brown rice according to directions. When rice is about 15 minutes away from being done saute in a separate pan the onion and the red pepper (about 12 minutes). Add the garlic to the onion mixture heating through about 2 minutes more. Add the tomatoes to heat through. Add the beans. Mix the rice with the tomato/vegetable mixture. Add Salt and pepper. (At this point we had to go out and I just put this all in a casserole dish that was covered and stuck it in the oven at 200 until we got back!I added a bit of water so it wouldn't dry out--we were out about an hour--but you don't need to do this)

We served this with some Brussels sprouts and lima beans.  

I like the taste of this without the added taco sauce because I like the taste of a stuffed pepper. My husband liked it with taco sauce--it would be good served on tacos also!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Crockpot lentil quinoa cauliflower soup

This is a wonderful tasting soup and very different! I found it at this link so go there for more recipes!


  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 3/4 cup uncooked small red lentils (masoor dhal)
  • Optional: 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 large carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 small head cauliflower OR 2 medium potatoes or OR 1 med. zucchini OR 1 small butternut squash (I used the cauliflower and love it!)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 inch piece cinnamon stick
  • 2 thin slices fresh ginger
  • 1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded (I didin't have--a did put a pinch of red pepper)
  • 6 cups water or unsalted soup stock (I used 4 cups veg broth and 2 cups chicken broth)
  • 1/2 tsp gr cumin
  • 1/2 tsp gr fennel seed (I didn't have any)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp gr coriander
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaf or 1 sprig fresh
  • 1 tsp dried basil or 1 Tbsp minced fresh
  • 1/4 tsp dried rosemary leaves or 1 sprig fresh
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste and fresh ground black pepper
  • 4 Tbsp minced fresh herbs: parsley, cilantro or basil
  • 2 cups chopped fresh greens: kale, chard, or spinach(kale is what I had) 
  • (More Heat: Add 1/2 - 1 tsp green curry paste OR 1/4 tsp cayenne powder

Crockpot Directions:

  1. Rinse the quinoa and red lentils in a bowl or pan, then drain into a colander
  2. Peel the carrots, slice lengthwise, then slice in thin pieces
  3. Wash and trim the celery stalks, then slice crosswise in thin pieces
  4. Break or cut the cauliflower into large chunks - these will break up into smaller pieces as they cook
  5. Combine olive oil, quinoa, lentils, herbs & spices, fresh ginger and jalapeno in the crockpot
  6. Add the vegetables, except for the optional greens, and cover with the 6 cups water
  7. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or more if needed (I did it a bit longer--I was out)
  8. 20 minutes before serving, turn the heat up to high and stir in optional greens
  9. Just before serving, add the minced fresh parsley, basil or cilantro, salt & pepper, and serve, removing the ginger slices, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, as you come across them

Stovetop Directions:

  1. Heat oil in large sauce pan on medium
  2. In a separate pan, bring to a boil: water or stock, quinoa, lentils, bay leaf, cinnamon stick, ginger slices, jalapeno
  3. Saute the veggies except for greens 10 minutes. Add cumin, coriander, turmeric, fennel and paprika and stir until heated and veggies are coated
  4. Stir in the quinoa and lentils, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the optional greens. Cover and cook 5 more minutes or until greens are wilted.
  5. Stir in the fresh parsley, basil or cilantro, salt & pepper, and serve

Cooking Tips

To speed up cooking, preheat the crockpot on high, bring everything to a boil in another pot, add to the crockpot and cook on high for 2 - 3 hours.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Lemon roasted chicken and vegetables (brussels,potatoes,mushrooms)

I had this tonight and we loved the flavors! The lemon, garlic, rosemary etc--fabulous. I found a recipe here: I liked part of the idea,
But I changed it up--I added some things and changed the way I cooked it.  I just roasted the whole thing in the oven for about 45 minutes-50 minutes at 375-400 (we went on a walk so I turned it to 375 for a while.

a pound or so of small red potatoes (or whatever amount you like)
fresh Brussels spouts
mushrooms (I used about 8 ounces but more would have been better
Boneless, skinless thighs (I used a package of about 8
fresh rosemary (I used about 2 sprigs about 3 inches each) (chop up the green part)
5-6 garlic cloves (I minced 2 , I sliced the rest)
1 lemon
4 tablespoons of olive oil, divided
a few pinches of red pepper flakes
black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix half the rosemary, half of the oil, squeeze the juice of the lemon, add salt and pepper, add 2 cloves of garlic minced.  Dip the chicken in this and place on roasting pan.

Surround the chicken with the brussel sprouts, mushrooms (I cut these up), and the red potatoes (if some are big slice these up). Sprinkle the remaining oil over the veggies. Sprinkle the remaining rosemary on the vegetables. Slice up the rest of the garlic and sprinkle over the veggies and the chicken. Slice the lemon which is left without the juice and place over the veggies and chicken. Sprinkle the chicken with some red pepper flakes.

Bake for 45 minutes to 55 minutes until done---some browning should occur. You can also cook at 375--takes a bit longer.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Crockpot Ginger coconut chicken with veggies

Recipe Type: Main
Author: Aimee
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 5 hours
Total time: 5 hours 30 mins
Yield: 6-8 servings
Serve this creamy and fragrant stew over Jasmine or brown rice. You can top  with a few chopped scallions. (I also used some coconut sprinkled on top) good with peanuts too
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 inch cube of ginger (about 30 grams), roughly chopped
  • 1 small sweet onion, peeled, quartered
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons butter (omitted)
  • 2.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into four (used 3 breasts--thighs would be nicer, probably)
  • 2 cans coconut milk, not shaken (I only had one, so used about a half can of chicken broth with it and I think I would prefer it this way)
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 can of baby corn cobs (I used corn--didn't have the kind here)
  • 1 cup peas or frozen vegetables of your choice (I used garden peas, fresh cauliflower and zucchini and yellow squashed--the last 3 were already cooked)
  • For the spice blend
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground tumeric (I think I would prefer less of this spice).
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • (I added yellow raisins--about 1/2 cup)
  • (I had some coconut for sprinkling and some mango sauce)
  1. Combine ingredients from the spice blend together and set aside.
  2. In a mini food processor, combine garlic, ginger and onion and pulse until it forms a paste.
  3. In the bottom of a slow-cooker placed on a burner, heat olive oil . Add pureed aromatics and stir well. Cook for a few minutes, then add spice blend. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Move aromatics to one side of the pot and add chicken pieces to the pot. The recipe calls for cooking chicken slightly--I don't like doing this as it seems to toughen the chicken. (Cook chicken slightly on all sides,--me nope) using a sturdy wooden spoon to move it around the pot. It should get thoroughly coated with the spice mixture.
  5. Open the cans of coconut milk and remove the cream from the top using a soup spoon. You should have about 1 cup. Pour the coconut milk over the chicken and with both cans, it should just barely cover the chicken.
  6. Drain the corn cobs and chop in half. Add to the slow-cooker.
  7. Place the slow cooker in the base and cook on low for 4 hours. (perhaps because I used breasts--but to get them tender and really falling apart I cooked it more like 6 hours--and part of the time on high--about an hour on high)
  8. Whisk cornstarch with coconut cream until smooth and add to the chicken. Stir well. Add frozen peas or other vegetables of your choice. Cook for another half an hour or until you deem the chicken cooked and the vegetables hot.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

sweet potato black bean burrito

Not the best picture--this was before adding the salsa and olives.  It is really tasty because of the roasted sweet potatoes. I found this on Pinterest and here is the link

Here is the recipe

Yields: 2 servings
1/2 cup brown rice
2-3 medium to large sweet potatoes
1 tbs olive oil
dash of cumin, chili powder, garlic powder (all optional)
1 can black beans
6 small corn or whole wheat tortillas
1 avocado, cut into cubes
your favorite salsa
optional: diced tomatoes, grated cheese, lettuce, peppers
Cook brown rice according to package directions.
Heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray large baking sheet with non-stick vegetable oil spray. Peel and cut sweet potatoes into 3/4-inch cubes. Toss in large bowl with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and any other desired spices. Spread in one layer on baking sheet and roast for 25-30 minutes, turning once, until soft and crispy on the edges. Meanwhile, heat black beans in pan over low heat. Heat a small skillet over medium heat and use to warm up tortilla.
Arrange warm tortilla on a plate and top with brown rice, black beans, roasted sweet potatoes, avocado, your favorite salsa (mine is peach salsa) and any other toppings you enjoy.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Owl cupcakes

    Corwin had these for his first birthday---the whole owl theme.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

chicken soup with quinoa

My hubby wasn't feeling the greatest so I decided to make chicken soup. I got the idea here:  But I added to it. 
Chicken Soup with Quinoa
1 tab olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
6 carrots, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1/4 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
6 cups good chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste
1  boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut up in bite sized pieces
1 14 ounce can petite diced tomatoes, drained
cup or 2 of water for cooking chicken in---adds more both to the soup
3 inch piece of fresh rosemary
1/2 teas dried thyme
1/2 teas crushed sage
1/4-1/2 teas celery seed
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 potato
handful of spaghetti noodles chopped
1. In a small pot set over low heat, cook the onions and carrots in about a tablespoon of olive oil. Cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and quinoa, and cook for about a minute.Meanwhile cook the chicken with the water and the seasonings (adding the potato).  Pour in chicken stock, add the tomatoes and the vegetables, and noodles-- raise the heat to medium, and simmer for about 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to achieve the taste you want.